The Blitzboks came from behind to secure an impressive 21-19 win over New Zealand in their Pool A clash at the season-opening Dubai SVNS on Saturday evening.
After the men in black flew out of the blocks to lead 19-7 at the break, the men in green and gold scored two tries in quick succession in the second half to get their noses in front, and they were able to hold on for the win.
South Africa’s tries came courtesy of Quewin Notrje, Ronald Brown and Masande Mtshali, while Justin Gedult and Brown added the extra points.
The win meant South Africa finished top of Pool A, and will take on the flying Australians in quarter-finals on Sunday as they look for their first series win since last year’s competition in Dubai.
The quarter-final against Australia will kick off at 8.58 am on Sunday. The other quarters will see Ireland going up against Fiji at 9.20 am, the United States against New Zealand at 9.42 am, and Samoa against Argentina at 10.04 am.
Earlier on Saturday, the Springbok Women went down 17-5 to Great Britain in what was another fighting performance.
South Africa opened the scoring in the third minute of the game through Nadine Roos, but the British were able to counter with three tries in quick succession through Grace Crompton, Emma Uren and Ellie Boatman.
The South Africans will take on Spain at 11.42 am in the 9th/10th place semi-final on Sunday.